Updated: April 12, 2021 3:55:33 pm
A sub-inspector at the Kattoor police station in Coimbatore was caught on camera attacking the staff of a hotel and reportedly asking them to down shutters to prevent the spread of Covid-19. The incident took place at around 10.21 pm on Sunday night. Hotels and restaurants have been given permission to operate till 11 pm in Tamil Nadu.
The CCTV footage of the incident shows the police officer, identified as Muthu, entering the Sri Raja Hotel at 10:21 pm. The hotel at that time had kept its shutters half open and a few customers were seen eating. The footage then shows the police officer beating up the hotel staffers with his lathi, with a woman also sustaining injuries.
A SI attached to Katoor police station(Coimbatore) was caught on camera hitting workers of a hotel in Gandhipuram for functioning past the permitted time. The officer had attacked the staff at 10.21 pm while hotels in TN are allowed to operate till 11 pm. @IndianExpress pic.twitter.com/Cqi0vBvGu1
— Janardhan Koushik (@koushiktweets) April 12, 2021
Five people, including a woman, suffered injuries in the incident. The video has gone viral on social media.
As per the latest Covid restrictions issued by the Tamil Nadu government, restaurants, food courts, tea shops (both dine-in and take away) are permitted to operate till 11 pm. Dine-in spaces need to function with 50 per cent capacity.
As per the complaint lodged by the hotel owner B Mohanraj to the Coimbatore city commissioner, the police constable came to their hotel after 10 pm and asked them to down the shutters because Kattoor Inspector Latha was expected to come to the area on night rounds.
He added that the hotel shutters were half downed and a group of women from Hosur had come asking the owner to provide them some food as they had a bus to catch and they were hungry. So, the hotel had served them dosas, which is when the cop came in.
The complainant also claimed that Inspector Latha has been intimidating shopkeepers in the area for some time.
Jayalakshmi, who was one of the persons to be hit by the police officer, said, “We came to the hotel by 10:20 pm. As police officers had previously instructed the hotel owner to close the premises, they switched off the lights and kept the shutters half closed. We were having our dosas when a police officer suddenly came in and beat us.”
She added, “We were asked to get up and we started panicking. I didn’t have space to move away from the spot. When the cop was beating others, the lathi hit me in the head. I was in severe pain so I sat down holding my head. The police officer appeared to apologise to me but I was not sure. I didn’t hear anything as I was in complete shock,” she said.
Based on the directions of the city commissioner ADGP Davidson Devasirvatham, the SI was transferred immediately to the control room and an inquiry has been initiated against him.
The state human rights commission has sought a detailed report on the incident from the police commissioner.
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